Governor Granholm to Focus on Alternative Energy During NGA Meeting in Washington
LANSING – Governor Jennifer M. Granholm will be in Washington, D.C. this weekend for the winter meeting of the National Governors Association (NGA) where the nation’s governors will focus on making the nation a global leader in energy efficiency, clean energy technology, alternative fuels use, and energy research.
The agenda is a particularly exciting one for Governor Granholm who has outlined an aggressive alternative energy agenda designed to transform Michigan’s economy and create jobs in the process.
“Development of alternative energy technologies represents a transformational opportunity for Michigan to attract new global investment and create new jobs,” Granholm said. “Michigan is uniquely positioned to take advantage of the evolving green energy revolution. Our untapped wind resources offer us an almost unlimited source of clean, zero-carbon electricity; our productive farm and forest land can be put to use to grow the fuels of the future; our universities and corporate research centers are becoming world leaders in alternative energy science; and our manufacturing know-how can build the components of the green-energy economy.”
Experts predict that renewable energy and energy efficiency alone will add $4.5 trillion in value to the U.S. economy by 2030 and create millions of good-paying jobs.
During a meeting of NGA’s Securing a Clean Energy Future Task Force, Granholm and her colleagues will examine the role of traditional electricity sources such as coal and nuclear power in our nation’s energy future and hear how utility companies plan to balance the mix of efficiency, coal, nuclear, and renewable energy sources to meet future power needs. The governor is also expected to participate in candid conversations with her fellow governors on reducing the nation’s dependence on foreign oil and greenhouse gas emissions while keeping the economy strong.
Saturday’s opening plenary session will provide an overview of the NGA’s Securing a Clean Energy Future initiative. During the plenary, three-time Pulitzer Prize winner and New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman will discuss states’ role in helping America achieve a cleaner, more independent energy future, and Jeffrey R. Immelt, chairman of the board and chief executive officer of General Electric Company, will talk about the role businesses can play in advancing energy and environmental innovation.
A second plenary session on Monday will focus on roles for the private sector and venture capital in helping America secure a clean energy future. Former CIA Director R. James Woolsey will address the need to develop and support alternatives to imported petroleum, the prospects for current and near-term technologies to make a significant difference, and the role states can play in advancing these options. In addition, John Doerr, a partner with Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers, will speak about promising energy technologies and how states can help spur clean-energy innovation.
In addition to focusing on alternative energy, the governors are expected to explore the future of the nation’s surface transportation policy and finance system, strategies for improving struggling elementary and secondary schools, long-term care challenges facing states and the role of traditional domestic energy in a clean-energy future.
The governor will also be appealing for federal partnership from the president and Congress to accelerate investments in job creation and economic stability and arguing against federal regulations and budget cuts that risk the states’ economic recovery.
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